Sentence Correction Overview

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Sentence Correction Overview

by TestPundit Anurag » Thu May 25, 2006 11:54 pm
Hello everyone:

I wanted to start a thread on an overview of sentence correction section.

Before I get started with the overview, however, I wanted to talk about the philosophy of GMAT questions (The following discussion is courtesy of TestPundit, and is paraphrased from its course materials)

GMAT questions tend to be structural in nature. Especially the verbal questions. What I mean by "structural" is that they all follow a pre-defined structure with a specific purpose. As such, these questions can be broken down into the structural components. For instance, in a sentence correction question, the sentence may have a main point that the author is trying to convey. However, the sentence may also have components, often as modifiers, that may not be central to the primary purpose of the sentence. Understanding the role of various components in a sentence will help you focus on the error a lot more quickly. Consequently, you will get to the answer a lot more quickly.

I would like to explain the concept with a real example. Does any of you have a sentence correction question you want me to use to explain this better?

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by tngearhart » Thu Jun 08, 2006 3:31 pm
Though some education experts claim that the low test scores of children in the city can be raised by hiring more teachers and an increase in the amount of funding for textbooks and other supplies, others insist that doing this cannot guarantee any improvement.

- by hiring more teachers and an increase in the amount of funding for textbooks and other supplies, others insist that doing this

- by hiring more teachers and increasing funding for textbooks and other supplies, others insist that doing so

- by a hiring of more teachers and increasing the amount of funding for textbooks and other supplies, other insist that doing so

- by hiring more teachers and increasing the amount of funding for textbooks and other supplies, others insist that doing this

- by hiring more teachers and an increase in funding for textbooks and other supplies, others insist that doing so

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by TestPundit Anurag » Tue Jun 13, 2006 9:04 pm
Thanks tngearhart for sharing the following sentence correction question. Let me break this down for you:

Though some education experts claim that the low test scores of children in the city can be raised by hiring more teachers and an increase in the amount of funding for textbooks and other supplies, others insist that doing this cannot guarantee any improvement.

The above sentence has the following structure:

Though "noun phrase A" claim that "noun phrase B" can be raised by
- "verb phrase C" and
- "noun phrase D",
others insist that "pronoun for C and D" cannot guarantee any improvement.

When you look at this structure, you can immediately see that the most obvious error here is in non-parallel construction of C and D. Either both should be verb phrases or noun phrases. What seals the deal for the two phrases to be verb phrases is the follow-on clause "others insist that doing this...". Because all the answer choices have the verb "doing" in the clause, the parallel structure must include verb phrases. That eliminiates choices 1, 3, and 5, all of which have at least one noun phrase each. Choice 4 is incorrect because "doing this" is not a correct pronoun for a verb clause. Choice 2 has the correct pronoun "doing so".

Hope that helps. There is more detail one can get into here (e.g. this vs so). But I would respond to specific querries on that.

Keep those questions coming.

Writing from Miami.







- by hiring more teachers and an increase in the amount of funding for textbooks and other supplies, others insist that doing this

- by hiring more teachers and increasing funding for textbooks and other supplies, others insist that doing so

- by a hiring of more teachers and increasing the amount of funding for textbooks and other supplies, other insist that doing so

- by hiring more teachers and increasing the amount of funding for textbooks and other supplies, others insist that doing this

- by hiring more teachers and an increase in funding for textbooks and other supplies, others insist that doing so
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by lan0583 » Thu Jun 15, 2006 6:30 pm
What about this question:

Although schistosomiasis is not often fatal, it is so debilitating that it has become an economic drain on many developing countries.

I know this is a simple one, but I just want to see the pattern. If I get the pattern using the simple questions I'll be able to see the patterns for the hard ones.

thank you.

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by TestPundit Anurag » Fri Jun 16, 2006 4:16 pm
Dear lan0583:

here is the structure of the following sentence:

Although schistosomiasis is not often fatal, it is so debilitating that it has become an economic drain on many developing countries.

Breakdown:

Although "noun S" is not often fatal
"prounoun it" is "idiom so "adjective" that.."
"verb clause"

Although this sentence seems to be correct, there are several potential errors in this sentence that can be introduced:

- Incorrect pronoun for the "noun S"
- Incorrect idiom "so...that" or its incorrect usage. In this idiom, "so" is followed by an adjective and "that" is followed a verb clause that explains the consequence of the adjective following "so". For example, so tall that he can reach the top shelf.

Although this a seemingly easy senence, GMAT question-makers can very easily make this a very complex sentence bu adding new clauses and modifiers, while keeping the underlying main structure the same. The trick in sentence correction is to be quick in identifying the structure. That will give you a complete command over the sentence and help identify the potential errors quickly. It is hard to get the hang of initially, but very very useful in GMAT and later in life :-).

regards,
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by lan0583 » Sat Jun 17, 2006 9:24 pm
based on your explanation, the sentence is incorrect. but based on OG the sentence is correct. how is that possible....?

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by TestPundit Anurag » Tue Jun 20, 2006 11:59 am
No the sentence is correct. What I showed was how errors could be introduced. By analyzing the structure of this CORRECT sentence, you acn anticipate errors showing up in a similar sentence in the test. Basically it keeps you a step ahead of the question creators.

Hope that clarifies it for you.
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by lan0583 » Tue Jun 20, 2006 5:36 pm
i got you... i just missed reading the one sentence...im sorry about that.

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by lan0583 » Tue Jun 20, 2006 5:41 pm
i got you... i just missed reading the one sentence...im sorry about that.

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Re: Sentence Correction Overview

by Psychodementia » Wed Oct 11, 2006 1:39 pm
TestPundit Anurag wrote:Does any of you have a sentence correction question you want me to use to explain this better?
Curious to know - is it "Does any of you........." or "Do any of you"

If the former, then why ?

Arun

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Re: Sentence Correction Overview

by aim-wsc » Wed Nov 22, 2006 3:12 am
:|

cut :|
Last edited by aim-wsc on Thu Nov 23, 2006 10:17 am, edited 1 time in total.

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by 800guy » Thu Nov 23, 2006 9:47 am
i think it all depends on the whether the noun following is plural or not.

singular:

does any of YOU - of YOU is a singular phrase
does any TEACHER
does any PERSON

plural:

do any TEACHERS
do any DOGS

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Patterns for structuring

by lalitaroral » Wed Nov 29, 2006 11:30 pm
Will be thankful if you can enlist some patterns for SC structure.

pls also tell more abt sentence division strategy